BILL REQ. #: S-1552.2
|State of Washington||58th Legislature||2003 Regular Session|
READ FIRST TIME 02/24/03.
TO THE HONORABLE DENNIS BRADDOCK, SECRETARY OF THE WASHINGTON
DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL AND HEALTH SERVICES, TO THE HONORABLE TERRY
BERGESON, SUPERINTENDENT OF PUBLIC INSTRUCTION, AND TO THE HONORABLE
LAURA PORTER, DIRECTOR OF THE WASHINGTON STATE FAMILY POLICY COUNCIL:
We, your Memorialists, the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Washington, in legislative session assembled, respectfully represent and petition as follows:
WHEREAS, Child abuse and neglect continues to be a significant problem in Washington; and
WHEREAS, Child abuse and neglect impose on Washington's people and governments significant societal and fiscal costs that result from trauma, impairment of personal and physical development of victims, and the need for investigation, interventions, and family disruption; and
WHEREAS, Direct economic costs reflect expenditures incurred at the local and state government levels by the child welfare system as well as the judicial, law enforcement, health, and mental health systems in responding to abused and neglected children and their families; and
WHEREAS, Direct costs include expenses associated with hospitalization and medical services provided to treat injuries resulting from abuse; child protective services and police investigations; foster care and other out-of-home placement services for maltreated children; and family preservation, rehabilitation, and treatment programs; and
WHEREAS, Indirect costs reflect the long-term economic consequences of child maltreatment in such areas as special education, mental health, substance abuse, teen pregnancy, welfare dependency, domestic violence, homelessness, juvenile delinquency, and adult criminality; and
WHEREAS, Effective prevention programs focus on maximizing individual and family strengths, building a network of formal and informal support, and increasing awareness of behaviors and choices that lead to a safe, self-sufficient, healthy, and secure life; and
WHEREAS, There are a number of nongovernmental agencies that exist to improve child protection through education and support; and
WHEREAS, Some nongovernmental agencies offer classes for children and parents that can significantly reduce the likelihood of children being bullied, molested, or abducted;
NOW, THEREFORE, Your Memorialists respectfully pray that the Secretary of Social and Health Services, the Superintendent of Public Instruction, and the Director of the Washington State Family Policy Council shall consult with one another and appropriate nongovernmental agencies dedicated to the reduction of child abuse and neglect and identify optimal methods for annually providing information to school districts about programs offered by such organizations that have demonstrated outcomes that reduce or prevent child abuse or neglect and provide links to such organizations on the web site of the office of the superintendent of public instruction.
BE IT RESOLVED, That copies of this Memorial be immediately transmitted to the Secretary of Social and Health Services and the Superintendent of Public Instruction.